3rd time’s a charm as man enjoys eclipse with family along the shores of the Yampa | SteamboatToday.com

3rd time’s a charm as man enjoys eclipse with family along the shores of the Yampa

Nick and Carol Rau view Monday's solar eclipse with special glasses at Yampa River State Park.
John F. Russell

Angelo Boeri sat in a camping chair Monday near the visitors center at Yampa River State Park staring at the sky through a protective pair of solar eclipse sunglasses.

“It was special because I got to watch it with my son and all my family,” Boeri said.

It was the 69-year-old’s third solar eclipse. He watched the first as a child growing up in Italy, and the second, which was a total eclipse, in the Pacific Ocean while working on a cruise ship near Hawaii.

“When I was younger, we didn’t have these glasses, like that,” Boeri said. “So we would get a piece of glass, then we would burn it with candles to get it black. Then we would look through it the best we could, so that we could watch.”

Truth is that method would probably make most ophthalmologists cringe, but Boeri’s sight survived the test with no impacts. The good news is that today’s technology made watching the solar eclipse a lot easier, and safer. 

Boeri was able to view Monday’s solar eclipse with his family and the other 75 to 100 people who gathered at Yampa River State Park to watch the moon pass in front of the sun. It wasn’t a total eclipse this time, but 93 percent was good enough for Boeri and his family.

“Watching it as a family was the whole purpose behind it,” Boeri’s son Christian said. “We were thinking about driving up north, but this was close enough — 90 or whatever percent it was was good enough, and we didn’t spend four hours sitting in the car. I’m sure it is going to be crazy on the roads getting back, and the kids start school tomorrow, so this seemed to be a more logical way to go about it.”

Many people showed up at the state park near Hayden a few hours before the eclipse was scheduled to occur. They hung out with other people interested in the eclipse and also picked up the hard-to-find glasses that were needed to view the spectacle.

“We didn’t want to get stuck in a traffic jam, and we also didn’t want to end up on a driveway just looking at it,” said Susie Soderquist. “We wanted to be around other people and share the experience.”

“It’s quite a few more people than we expected,” said Jacob Brey, who manages Yampa River State Park. “It is open here, we have a clear view of the sky and the weather cooperated … this definitely surpassed what we thought we would have coming out.”

The park had only 40 pairs of eclipse glasses, but people split up into groups and shared them.

“This is really amazing. People came from all over,” Steamboat resident Carol Rau said. “I think it was just really cool.”

A group of about 200 people also gathered near the Thunderhead gondola building at Steamboat Ski Area to watch the eclipse.

Spectators had a clear view as the moon passed in front of the sun making the surroundings noticeably darker and dropping the temperature by several degrees.

To reach John F. Russell, call 970-871-4209, email jrussell@SteamboatToday.com or follow him on Twitter @Framp1966.

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